Know someone who needs a little help keeping up with their backups, or who needs to access files from multiple locations?

Why not treat them to an online backup service like MozyHome? The first 2GB of storage is free; beyond that the service costs $4.95 per month for unlimited backup.

What I like best about this service is its extreme ease of use. It takes less than a minute to sign up for the service and download the software. Mozy walks you quickly through scheduling your backups by scanning your hard drive and preselecting a recommended list of file folders, programs and directories that you can check off for backup. These include e-mail and contacts and the Music, My Documents and Photos folders.

With an Intel 1.86GHz Pentium M processor, 2GB of RAM and a connection speed of 3Mbit/sec., my initial 560MB backup took 1 hour and 20 minutes. (Note that the initial backup takes longer than subsequent ones.)

You can also choose whether to have Mozy encrypt your data. The service also allows you to select either “quicker backup,” which requires more CPU utilization, or “faster computer,” which slows the backup process but reduces the performance impact on other applications running on your PC.

After the initial backup, MozyHome will ask you to schedule a time to back up. From then on, it’s automatic. Another great feature of MozyHome is block-level incremental backup. After the initial backup, MozyHome backs up only files that have been added or changed, making subsequent backups extremely fast.

MozyHome from Berkeley Data Systems Inc. (acquired by EMC Corp. in October)

Price: US$4.95 per month for unlimited backup; the first 2GB is free | Phone: (801) 756-2331

Summary: An online backup service that offers unlimited backup of files, photos and other data for $4.95 a month — that’s what I call peace of mind.

Comment: edit@itworldcanada.com

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